Translational funding enables researchers to set early-stage innovations and discoveries on a path to commercialization.
This funding can be used to de-risk a technology and increase its value in the eyes of commercial partners. Translational funding does not require and thereby, dilute equity ownership, although it may have participation rights or payback component.
Johns Hopkins University Grant Programs
A set of 3 philanthropic grant programs exist specifically for Johns Hopkins innovators who are developing technology for commercial application. Each year, $1 million in grants of up to $100,000 are disbursed across a number of funding cycles. Recipients of translational funding have access to additional support in the form of mentorship and networks. Note that each technology (as defined by JHTV case number) can receive only one JHTV translational funding award per fiscal year.
Maryland Innovation Initiative (MII) Funding
The state of Maryland, through its Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO), also provides a host of funding opportunities in support of innovation and technology advancement, including its Maryland Innovation Initiative (MII) funding. Some funding helps to advance ideas whereas other funding is available to startup companies.
Microsoft Innovation Acceleration Award
JHTV and Microsoft partnered together to promote entrepreneurship and adoption of leading digital technologies in a responsible and inclusive manner. Johns Hopkins faculty, students, and affiliated startups are eligible for the grant of up to $50,000. Deadline is April 11, 2021.
Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund (MSCRF)
Through TEDCO, the state of Maryland also provides funding opportunities to promote state-funded stem cell research and cures including Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund (MSCRF). They offer six programs to accelerate discovery and commercialization of human stem cell-based technologies.
In November 2017, Deerfield Management and The Johns Hopkins University announced the creation of Bluefield Innovations, a collaboration designed to catalyze the development of early stage therapeutics.
Researchers may want to consider a sponsored research agreement with a corporate partner to advance research in a targeted, translational fashion. JHTV helps to source, establish and manage these partnerships with industry, allowing investigators to focus on the science.